Over on a beach, which is not a thing I think of Canada as having, Gladys and Eugene are trading scar stories—which any lesbian knows is foreplay—but the thing is: Gladys doesn’t have any. Her porcelain skin is unmarred, save for today’s accident. I believe this is the writers’ way of explaining why this escapade with Eugenie and a Bottle is vital to her development. To someone as tightly wound as Gladys, losing control is the ultimate drug, as many of our favorite characters have proven in the past (See: Buffy and Spike). When she runs into the glacier-strewn water with Eugene, it reminds me a lot of early Spencer and Toby. But we all know how that turned out.
Back at the factory, Vera and Carol are in an all-out war over who will land the coveted position of office manager. Vera snatches the lead away from Carol when she comes up with a fool-proof way to get the new girls to feel like part of the team: why it’s one of her famous Lesbian Sex Parties, of course. Carol strokes her goatee (which is when you masturbate about someone you kind of hate) and plots her revenge. For one thing, she turns a perfectly respectable orgy into awkward middle-school shenanigans when she suggests a game of “pass the orange.”
Oranges are the only fruit ruining this party.
But then, when Betty confronts Reggie about her age, the oranges turn lethal. Reg hurls one right at Betts’ back. And even though this scene reminds me of both A League of Their Own and Fried Green Tomatoes, I still don’t get why Betty is waging a vendetta against the poor baby dyke.
In other horrible news, Kate successfully hits on Ivan and Gladys, disgusted with the direction the party has taken, sneaks out with Eugene. They go speeding down the highway in her fiancé’s car and this is the strangest episode in history because I am mad at Kate and sorry for James.
Eugene isn’t happy until he nearly kills them both. Gladys is initially furious, but the adrenaline has gone to her head and soon she and Eugene are ripping off each other’s clothes. Let that sink in for a moment. Gladys Hastings-Witham, the paradigm of justice, is hooking up with a man who advocated the murder of German POWs. It is a moment of such wrongness that birds fall from the sky, children scream uncontrollably, the seas boil, and earthquakes rumble as far away as Mars. Then a cop shows up in one of those rare television moments when you’re like “oh thank god, the police.”
“’Scuse me folks, but I’ve been getting reports that someone
has been tearing the fabric of the universe around here.”
Back at the party, Carol does the worst thing and attempts to publically humiliate Vera for her holy mission to provide sexual pleasure to all of Canada. Because she is descended from angels, she turns the joke around, but not before it costs her the promotion. And guys, can we talk for a minute about how far Vera has come from a woman I devoted exactly one sentence to in the first recap?
She has gone through injury and depression and emerged as the most consistently amazing character of season two. Anastasia Phillips brings strength and class to every moment, and the writers go out of their way to shame the slut-shamers. And the best thing of all is that even when the tears are smearing her makeup, the words she utters are “I’m not ashamed of any of it.”
And now for the scene I can’t stop thinking about. Betty McRae is letting Kate paint her nails bright red, merely so their hands have an excuse to touch, which is the saddest thing I have ever heard of. Kate takes this opportunity to confess that she and Ivan are going on a date, and even has the audacity to ask Betty to help pick out her outfit. Betty gives her the whole “oh no, you should totally go for it” speech that was probably written by Sappho during her first best friend crush. But her face (in addition to being black and blue) is a mask of confusion because how could something so terrible be happening to her heart while something so wonderful is happening to her hands? And Kate, I love you but this is some Alison DiLaurentis shit right here, and you are just not allowed to treat Betty McRae like Emily Fields.
NOOOO KATE, DON’T USE YOUR EYES FOR EVIL.
Sure enough, according to next week’s promo, Betty finally confronts Kate about that kiss and, presumably, her lack of understanding of lesbian nails.
See you next week, and I promise to bring extra bourbon and kleenex. And no bloody oranges.